Brown blames cleaner’s wages for £12,000 expenses payback

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Gordon Brown yesterday complained that paying his cleaner more than the minimum wage was the reason he had to pay back £12,000 in expenses….

Gordon Brown yesterday complained that paying his cleaner more than the minimum wage was the reason he had to pay back £12,000 in expenses.

Mr Brown made an appearance in an election special on Radio 1’s Newsbeat in which he faced a series of questions on expenses, public spending, immigration and the conflict in Afghanistan.

When the issue of expenses was raised Mr Brown said:
“I mean my father was a minister of the church, I was brought up to be taught that honesty was the most important thing, you’ve got to show integrity in what you do,”

However when it was pointed out that he himself had to pay back over £12,000 Mr Brown said:
“I’ve got to stay in two places at once, right? I’ve got my wife and I’ve got my children. I wasn’t claiming for a mortgage, I was paying for the expenses of having a house in London”

Mr Brown then added:
“What the guy [Sir Thomas Legg] basically said was I shouldn’t be paying the cleaner a minimum wage.

“It wasn’t wrong to have cleaning expenses, I was just paying her too good a wage”

Three Labour politicians, including the ex MP for Livingston Jim Devine, are currently awaiting trial over charges of theft over their own expenses claims.